Dr .Dimithri Devinda With ICOIC

Dr. Dimithri Devinda Jayagoda (2002 A/L) has recently completed his Ph.D. from Ritsumikan Asia Pacific University (APU) – Japan. He has conducted his research in the field of community capacity development and sustainability of Palawan Island in the Philippines. Dimithri earned a master’s degree from APU in development economics and a bachelor’s degree in business administration. Before leaving the island he has completed CIM-UK. He is the founder of “Dimi on Education,” an open Facebook group that shares educational information. During his school time at Isipathana he was a Senior Prefect, President Scout and a Troup Leader. So its Time to Share Dimitri 's Story with you

  Do you remember your first day and the last day at Isipathana College ?

It was January 2nd of 1989. I doubled checked and January 2nd fell on a Monday. I can still remember that I went to school with my father. Dissanayake Madam was at school when my father was also studying and told us that day that this year is her last. She is from Bandarawela. My first friend was Shiranka Peiris. Our fathers were colleagues (I think his father has also studied at Isipathana) and both were working in ships so they had things in common to discuss.
My last day remains a question mark. I still wonder if I really left the school.... I don’t think so. I remember the last day of O/L and A/L exams. After O/L about 15 of us went to see a film in Nugegoda Lavinia hall (it does not exist now), after A/L I went to meet Kumudu Sir (My accounting teacher who is a former Pathanian and a renowned accounting teacher in the country).  Then watched the movie ‘Euro Trip’ at my friend Kushan`s place, because we both wanted to go to London to continue our studies. But I haven't been to London yet. After A/L exam I served the college as a senior prefect and also as a scout leader. I got leaving certificates in 2004 because I had to apply for a university in Japan. I continuously went to Isipathana to get many recommendation letters and certificates until I left the country in 2005. After leaving to Japan, so far I went to Sri Lanka 5 times and never missed to go to Isipathana. During all those stays I visited the Prefect and Scout rooms as well as the Rugger room because many memories truly remained in those places. I don’t think I really left Isipathana.


Can you remember your Good old day’s friends ?

Of course. I can tell all the names of my O\L classmates of 11-7 class and where they used to sit. I was sitting with Gayan (Guyya), Kushan (Kudda) and Kasun (Kassa). Our rivals were back row friends namely Dinushka (Chicken), Husnie, Srimal (2002 Head Prefect) and Mushtaq. Left to us was Ranga, Bandara and Ramesh (Rama/Neviya). As for the big names, I met Walpola at Grade 3-C and we were playing tag rugby using an Amba Etaya (Mango Seed). Thivanka Roshan (Deputy Head Prefect of our batch) was the class monitor of Grade 3-C.

What are your best achievements at Isipathana ?

I was a class monitor in several times during the 13 years I spent at my school. I was a prefect at Grade 5 including my colleagues Ramesh, Gayan, Asela, and Thivanka. I passed the Grade 5 scholarship exam with 147 points. I was a President Scout and the Troop Leader during 2000’s. I passed the G.C.E O/L examination with 8 distinction passes. I was a member of U-17 all-island Rugby Champion team in 2000 under the captaincy of Walpola who beat the Royal in style at CR&FC grounds. I was a senior prefect of 2002 A/L batch which consist of many national level sportsmen and high ranked members of the armed forces. I passed G.C.E A/L with top grades (2A`s and a B) and got selected to the Management and Commerce faculty of University of Sri Jayawardenapura.

What do you remember about your early days at Isipathana ?

I entered Isipathana College in 1989. I got 147 points in Grade 5 scholarship and that was a very fortunate outcome because if I had 160, I had to go to no 1 school at that time (according to Grade 5 scholarship rankings).
I was an active student way back then. I became a prefect when I was in Grade 5 and until that I was a class monitor in several occasions.  I can remember all my classes and class teachers’ names from Grades 1 to 13. “In year 1 it was Dissanake Madam, in year 1-G class, Silvia Madam, in year 2-G Munasinghe Madam, in year 3-C Mudalige Madam, Weerakoon Madam in year 4-C, in year 5-C Susil Rir, Manel Madam and a Waidyaratne Thero in 6-3,  Liyanage Madam in 7-3, Manike Madam in 8-1, Weerasinghe Madam in 9-7, 10-7 and 11-7 (English Literature class) and Wijesundara Sir in 12-Commerce 1 and 2 classes”. Not only that I can remember the names of those teachers who taught all other subjects.
I have partially done athletics, swimming and rugby at school. But my main extracurricular activity was scouting. I joined the scout group as a junior scout in Grade 7 and continued scouting until I completed my studies. I am proud and at the same time sad to say that I am the only President Scout Award winner of 2002 A/L batch. I was awarded the best Junior Scout and Senior Scout awards at School Prize giving ceremonies. Also I was awarded school merits at Colours Night for excellence performances in rugby football in 2001 and scouting in 2002.
I was a “Senior Prefect” of 2002 A/L batch and served for school until 2003. I can proudly talk about a study group formed at Isipathana during A/L preparations. We formed a study group consisting of 4 members (Mr. Udith Perera, Mr. Sameera Ushantha, Mr. Kushan Peiris and myself). We studied together for about 10 months prior to A/L exams and the best thing was that we taught and shared to each other whatever we learned from other support classes. We had one goal to achieve and that was to get degrees and 4 us are graduates today (From universities in England, Sri Lanka and Japan) and doing well reputed jobs in Japan and Sri Lanka. Not only in our studies that we maintained a good social order and 4 of us are now happily married husbands and I’m now already a father. We prove one myth that is wrong which is “Pathanians are not known for good social order”.

Tell us about your education path

I did my A/L in year 2002 and soon after that I started studying marketing. I went to school in the morning to do duties as a Prefect and in the evening I followed marketing lectures with other professionals in the field. I and Udith were the only schoolboys who always come to ABS academy wearing school uniforms and we did that very proudly. Then we both got selected to the University of Sri Jayawardenapura and I was there for about one and half years. By the end of 2004, I have earned my Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing (CIM-UK) and left to Japan with a full scholarship. In 2005, I have started my bachelor’s degree at the Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University and completed my Bachelor in Business Administration in 2009. Also on the same year right after I graduated, I took a Masters Degree in International Cooperation Policy Majoring Development Economics from the same university which I successfully completed as well. At the same time, I have completed participating also in the Environmental Opinion Leaders (ENVOL) program in 2011. Then I directly continued to a PhD and I was able to finish it within 3 years. I have earned my Doctorate in Asia Pacific Studies in last September 2014. I also conducted a community development research in the Philippines in an island called Palawan.

What are your special achievements during your studies in Japan ?

Throughout those 9 years, I have represented my university and my country in various conferences. Among them was the 38th St. Gallen Symposium (St. Gallen Wings of Excellence Award) in Switzerland, held at St. Gallen University in May 2008 and which I consider as a great achievement. I was the only Sri Lankan at that conference out of 800 representatives. There were Presidents of European countries, Prime Ministers, politicians, world renowned C.E.Os, business personalities and academia from world renowned universities including Harvard University and The University of Tokyo.  I still remain as the first and the only Sri Lankan who represented Sri Lanka from my University, APU. My global conference quest didn’t stop there; I was selected as an official delegate to the 1st Global Initiatives Symposium in Taiwan, held at National Taiwan University both in July 2009 and 2010.
Again I was the only Sri Lankan at the United Nations University Global Seminar, 26th Shonan Session – "Towards a Sustainable Global Society," held in Japan in September 2010. Also I represented my country at Education Without Borders (EWB), International Student Conference in Dubai, held by the Ministry of Education of United Arab Emirates in March 2011 along with my brother Naveen Kanishka Jayagoda (Isipathana 1993-2006). Not only that I have presented my research findings at academic conferences held in Singapore, Hong Kong, the Philippines and many parts of Japan.
Being a University student in Japan for 9 years, I was a senior for many fellow Sri Lankans. “One thing that I am happy about being a Pathanian is that as Pathanians we know how to stand smart with chest up in front of anybody and with high confidence as a real man, which I don’t see in many other boys from other schools”. My relationship with Isipathana runs deep tracing back from the 1960’s. My father is a proud Pathanian (Mr. Senaka Jayagoda) who sent his 3 sons to Isipathana with confidence. My two brothers (Naveen Jayagoda studied during 1993 to 2006 and Praveen Jayagoda studying from 2003 to date) are also proud members of the Isipathana family. “My mother is going to Isipathana College since 1989 to date continuously 25 years from my classes to my brother’s. Our whole family has a great passion towards this school. When I first realized that my wife was expecting a baby girl I was so disappointed that my child cannot study at Isiapathana College. Therefore she came up with a brilliant idea of naming our daughter ‘Midori’. My wife knows that my favorite color is green since I started schooling at Isipathana. In Japanese midori means ‘green’ and that’s the closest I could bring my daughter to Isipathana”.

Tell us about your family ??

I am 31 years old and a proud father now. I have a 2-year old daughter and my wife is also having roots to Isipathana. She was a Japanese language teacher for 4 years. My father, his brother and my two brothers are also Pathanians.

Message for fellow Students ??

You guys belong to one of the most prestigious college in the island and always walk to school or any organization with that pride in your heart. Always try to prove the point that you are different just because you went to Isipathana College. Please remain focused on your studies and at the same time don’t forget to engage in extracurricular activities. Never leave the school without playing rugby at it. You may not play 1st IV but you can always go to a ground and shout loud to your classmates and colleagues who are willing to die for your school. I never missed a single rugby match since 1998 (since my grade 10) to 2003 including those matches played in Kandy. One might say you can’t study when you focus too much on other extracurricular activities, come on then please step out of Isipathana. Forget what others say, I am?a doctor today and it’s all because of the exposure I got from my school. On top of that I am a President Scout and a Senior Prefect at Isispathana. That proves my point.

Message for old boys ??

Please rally in numbers when our juniors are playing die-hard rugby for the school. Shout saying "Go Pathana Go" and "I-S-I-P-A-T-H-A-N-A......Pathana Pathana Pathana.....” Whenever possible, gather with fellow batch mates, share thoughts, job information, university or study abroad opportunities.  Stay connected via ICOIC Facebook group or anything related to our school.  In your personal or social life never forget these essential and encouraging words - "Strive with Determination". Keep that as your motivational statement. That statement has driven me to become a doctor and will drive me to earn any social status here after.

What do you want to do in near future?

I want to become a professor in a well reputed university here in Japan so I can teach for many fellow students. On top of that I would like to help fellow Pathanians to come to Japan and study in universities. I have built a network with several key personalities in various universities and especially I personally know many staff members at APU Admissions and Academic office. I am willing to help my fellow brothers from application, visa process to settling and continuing studies in Japan. Please visit www.apu.ac,jp for further details and contact me via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or through Facebook “Dimithri Devinda Jayagoda”. Please send me a personal message saying you are a Pathanian and the school year. So then I can accept you and keep in touch.

What are your favorite quotes ??

“Strive with Determination” is my favorite quote when it comes to sports, studies or life.
Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new – Albert Einstein
You have enemies? Good. That means you`ve stood up for something, sometime in your life - Winston Churchill


Our Special Thanks To >> Mr . Dimithri Devinda Jayagoda , From Team ICOIC








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